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#684735 - 11/22/21 06:07 PM [Off-Topic] Health issues and performing live or recording
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 1992
Loc: Cow Country, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Expert

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 1992
Loc: Cow Country, Florida
I think there are a good many of us here who are older. Some have said they no longer want to perform live.

For those who are still out there performing, what do you do differently than when you were younger?

How does health affect your ability to deal with software like BIAB?

I go to the gym, I ride my bike for exercise. I try to eat a balanced diet. I don't drink, smoke and have cut down a bunch on sugar and salt.

After all that, I find my hands are a bit stiff at times which makes playing guitar much more difficult. I play less complex stuff as a result.

How do you deal with these issues?

Billy
_________________________
Sears, Roebuck and Co guitar, Black Diamond Strings, RCA Victor Radio ASCAP Writer/Publisher IPI Number: 1117481473 Songwriters Guild Of America And All My EX'S actually do LIVE IN Texas

"Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game."

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#684826 - 11/23/21 05:49 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 1145
Loc: The Heartland....Kansas
chulaivet1966 Offline
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Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 1145
Loc: The Heartland....Kansas
Howdy Plano....

Well....guess I can chime in.

I haven't performed 'live' in the band context since 1980.
But....I've kept playing, writing songs and recording because that's just what I do.

Like yourself, and I'd guess some others here, arthritis in my fingers has been a real annoyance for the last 4-5 years.
My fingers just don't bend at the knuckles without lots of focus and determination.
To me...it feels like someone took a rubber band and wound it around each knuckle joint a few times.

It takes lots of repetition to learn a new song to get muscle memory doing its thing over time.
I have about 23 of my favorite cover songs which I go through most every day to keep my rhythm chops up.
Most of them are not easy to play so it's struggle to keep motivat4ed.
I can get through about 2-3 consecutively (as in a set) then I have to stop, shake out my chord hand and mutter some colorful expletives to my old self.
I couldn't play a complete set now even if my life depended on it.

I take lots of aspirin for the pain over the years.
Also...which you don't do....I'll have a highball or two and it helps loosen up my fingers be far more cooperative with my demands on them.
I'd guess it thins the blood a bit and reduces the overall inflammation....just a guess.
It really does help.

I also have spinal stenosis (last 6 years or so) and have to walk with a cane so I have to sit and play.
I hate having to do that because I like to move around when playing rhythm guitar.

Figured I'd offer a current pic to attach a name with a aged face:
http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/album.php?albumid=3002&attachmentid=34300

It's from my current YT video music project.
Damn...this getting old isn't for the faint of heart but it beats the alternative. smile

That's my story....didn't mean to write a novelette.

Have a great day everyone....

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#684827 - 11/23/21 05:55 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 5665
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
Notes Norton Offline
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Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 5665
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
I'm still gigging.

What do I differently?

Not much. I still schlep gear and play for the same age group I cultivated in the early 1990s.

With decades of experience, I think I play better and read the audience better.

I still enjoy gigging, it's the most fun I can have with my clothes on.

Health? I have never-ever missed a gig or shown up late.

Insights and incites by Notes ♫
_________________________
Bob "Notes" Norton smile Norton Music
https://www.nortonmusic.com

100% MIDI Super-Styles recorded by live, pro, studio musicians for a live groove
& Fake Disks for MIDI and/or RealTracks

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#684828 - 11/23/21 06:03 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Notes Norton]
Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 1145
Loc: The Heartland....Kansas
chulaivet1966 Offline
Expert

Registered: 01/10/13
Posts: 1145
Loc: The Heartland....Kansas
Originally Posted By: Notes Norton
I'm still gigging.


Howdy NN....

I envy that you still have the ability to play without some typical annoying ailments that can sneak up on us fossils. (I'm 74)

I've said it back when I was in live bands playing in the bay area:
"There's no drug in the world like playing live to a receptive audience."

Back to topic...

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#684831 - 11/23/21 06:14 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 23798
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
Matt Finley Offline
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Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 23798
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
A regular massage helps me, both with spending too much time at the computer, and the physical stresses of playing my horns. At 70 I don’t gig too much but still play concerts. Arthritis made me give up a few instruments like tenor sax.
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#684846 - 11/23/21 07:36 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 2475
Loc: Derry,Ireland
musiclover Offline
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Registered: 08/13/09
Posts: 2475
Loc: Derry,Ireland
A cheap Honor 5 watch such as this is brilliant,

https://www.amazon.co.uk/HONOR-Waterproo...03938&psc=1

Can take your heart rate, counts your steps, (I try to do at least 6k a day sometimes hits 10k,) will vibrate when you are sitting for too long, will connect to the app on your mobile (cell) phone and keep a graph of your heart rate throughout the day, can monitor your sleep patterns, take your blood o2 levels (though it has to be tight on your wrist to do this) only needs to be charged about once a week.

And all for about £30.

As the question is partly about performing live, well I don't but thought I would mention this as its to do with health as well.


Edited by musiclover (11/23/21 07:40 AM)
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#684869 - 11/23/21 10:38 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 04/08/11
Posts: 6582
Loc: Akron, Oh
eddie1261 Offline
Veteran

Registered: 04/08/11
Posts: 6582
Loc: Akron, Oh
My issues are similar to my fellow Vietnam Vet. I have arthritis across all the knuckles in both hands. Particularly in the top knuckle that makes fretting very difficult. It's not so bad playing keyboards because of the type of force I ask my knuckles to do when pressing downward. I can still play the sax but long runs (not that I ever played long, fluid lines like Coltrane) are a challenge. Fortunately the muscle memory comes quickly so when I need to do a specific line I can get the muscles to cooperate in 5-7 passes through it and then slowly get it up to speed.

Add in diabetes issues... but as recently as this year I played live. We only did 5 shows but this year was places ramping back up from Covid blackouts. That uncertainty early in the year kept places in the dark, thus no booking went on and we were glad to get 5. In face one of them we actually built ourselves.
_________________________
When I went to college one of the counselors asked if I wanted to major in history. I told him I didn't see any future in it.

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#684912 - 11/23/21 01:50 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 7913
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
rockstar_not Offline
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Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 7913
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
Light guitars and basses. My Squier Bronco bass weighs hardly much more than a cheap Stratocaster. And it’s only a 30” scale. So my swans neck injury on my fretting hand pinky is less of a pain. Literally and figuratively. I did upgrade the bass with a Lace Alumitone pickup which required some additional hog-out of the body.

I first replaced my heavy 4 string with an Ibanez SR655 5 string that was lighter, but I got the Bronco set up the way I like it and it’s even lighter.



Edited by rockstar_not (11/23/21 01:54 PM)

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#684918 - 11/23/21 02:55 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 1992
Loc: Cow Country, Florida
Planobilly Offline
Expert

Registered: 07/10/15
Posts: 1992
Loc: Cow Country, Florida
One of the tricks I learned a long time ago even before age became a factor was to wash my hands in very warm water before I went on stage.

That may have had the dual effect of being relaxing and lessening stress and increasing blood flow in the fingers. I also used those few seconds in a meditative way to clear my mind of all the other things in life. I use to do the same thing before I got in my airplane. Clear my mind and focus on the task ahead.

I also play lighter guitars now. Like Eddie, I find playing the piano is not as hard on my hands. I have considered moving away from the guitar to the piano.

Billy
_________________________
Sears, Roebuck and Co guitar, Black Diamond Strings, RCA Victor Radio ASCAP Writer/Publisher IPI Number: 1117481473 Songwriters Guild Of America And All My EX'S actually do LIVE IN Texas

"Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game."

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#684976 - 11/23/21 06:55 PM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 7913
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
rockstar_not Offline
Veteran

Registered: 01/14/02
Posts: 7913
Loc: Colorado Springs, CO, USA
I’m going to try that Billy!

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#685008 - 11/24/21 12:12 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 12/20/16
Posts: 1143
Loc: Gold Coast, Queensland, Austra...
Teunis Offline
Expert

Registered: 12/20/16
Posts: 1143
Loc: Gold Coast, Queensland, Austra...
I still play the odd show. What do I do differently? These days I tend to sit I can no longer stand for an hour or so. Some of my songs I’ve dropped the key but generally pick songs that I find easy to handle. The hands are crippled up a bit so I can’t play as I used to but that’s fine.

I still managed to do a verse of Apache with the old Tele over my shoulders. Also lead breaks in stuff like Blueberry Hill not too bad at 72. Playing over my shoulders is what I do at the next birthday step.

Had to cancel a thing at the start of the month due to the heart attack but I should be right to go Friday week.

I still have fun doing live shows. I take out the hearing aids and go for it. I use backing tracks initially generated using BIAB then edited a bit but it works ok. I still add a new song every month or so but COVID restrictions slowed things a bit. At last we have few restrictions in our area.

Tony


Edited by Teunis (11/24/21 12:16 AM)
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#685068 - 11/24/21 05:44 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 04/08/11
Posts: 6582
Loc: Akron, Oh
eddie1261 Offline
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Registered: 04/08/11
Posts: 6582
Loc: Akron, Oh
As bad as the physical maladies give us grief, add to that the mental component of being prone to panic attacks when being in a crowd. If my band ever played a bar (We won't do that. We cost too much for a bar.) where we'd be on the floor and the crowd is right there in our faces, I wouldn't make it through the whole show. About 30 minutes of that and I would be in full blown panic attack mode and have to get out of there. We play on stages where the crowd is some number feet below the stage and since I set up back by the drums they are also 15 feet from me. I was never one to socialize during breaks anyway, and if there are personal friends at a show I will have security let them come backstage to chat with them, but to mingle with the crowd, that's not me. So there is a mental aspect of health and playing as I got older.

Great example. I would have LOVED to see Brian Culbertson last Saturday. They played at the same place I played one week earlier. THAT night, I was on the stage. Last weekend I would have been on the crowd of as many as 2500, and I would have paid a lot of money for a seat and had to leave after a half hour or so. PTSD sucks out loud.
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When I went to college one of the counselors asked if I wanted to major in history. I told him I didn't see any future in it.

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#685113 - 11/24/21 07:42 AM [Off-Topic] Re: Health issues and performing live or recording [Re: Planobilly]
Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 5665
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
Notes Norton Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/06/00
Posts: 5665
Loc: Fort Pierce, Florida, U.S.A.
I play a light guitar, but then I've always preferred light guitars.

In my current duo I switch between sax, wind synth and guitar a lot, so having a lightweight guitar makes putting it on and off many times per night a lot better.

Back in the early 1990s I had an inherited case bursitis in my hip, and arthritis in the little finger of my left-hand due to a basketball accident when I was young.

The hip hurt so badly that I couldn't walk 2 city blocks without sitting down, and I brought a keyboard instead of the guitar on stage, so I could find an excuse to sit down when I wasn't playing sax or wind synth.

The finger hurt so much I avoided G#s on the sax. I'd skip that note whenever possible.

A doctor who thought that we take too many medications and pain relievers, and believed they should be used only when necessary, suggested the arthritis/bursitis diet.

For both arthritis and bursitis, treatment is similar:

Try the dietary approach first, and if that doesn't work, take stronger action.

Foods that may contribute to chronic inflammation are foods with a high glycemic index (foods that convert to sugar quickly), such as fruit juices, sugars, simple starches, or rice cakes, foods heavy in polyunsaturated or saturated fats, and foods high in arachidonic acid. Some specific foods to avoid are:

* Fatty cuts of red meat (high in saturated fats) lean is good
* Organ meats: liver, kidney, and so forth (very high in arachidonic acid)
* Egg yolks (very high in arachidonic acid)
* Poultry - chicken, duck, turkey (very high in arachidonic acid)
* Pasta (high glycemic index)
* Juices (high glycemic index)
* Rice, especially rice cakes (high glycemic index)
* White bread (substitute whole grain breads such as rye)
* Nightshade Plants bother many people (tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, peppers, paprika)

Glycemic index charts can be found on the Internet.

Better choices are foods with a low glycemic index and foods that are heavy in monounsaturated fats. Some specific good foods are:

* Salmon and other fish
* Oatmeal
* Low glycemic fresh fruits and vegetables
* Olives and olive oil
* Peanuts and other nuts
* Whey proteins
* Lean beef is good, 100% grass fed is better



Now I can walk 4 miles without any pain, I leave the keyboard at home and bring the guitar, and I play all the G# notes I want.

I've shared this diet with a few people, and those who stuck to the diet for over a month had great results.

The diet is restrictive, I miss chicken but I'd rather be pain free.

Insights and incites by Notes ♫
_________________________
Bob "Notes" Norton smile Norton Music
https://www.nortonmusic.com

100% MIDI Super-Styles recorded by live, pro, studio musicians for a live groove
& Fake Disks for MIDI and/or RealTracks

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